Archbishop Thabo Makgoba writes his Province

Posted by Kendall Harmon

Another area I want to mention, and for which I ask your prayers, is the development of Pastoral Guidelines in relation to the same-gender civil unions for which South African legislation now provides. Following requests to the Bishops for advice in relation to the pastoral care of people in such unions, and their families, the Synod of Bishops has, over several meetings, produced a document reflecting our common mind on this very sensitive issue. Proposals have now been sent to Dioceses for consultation within archdeaconries and parishes. We are requesting feedback on whether this offers the sort of guidance that those in pastoral ministry seek, in time for our February 2012 Synod of Bishops. PSC will also consider them. Let me underline that this document is not directly about the continuing debate around human sexuality, though it affirms that we uphold the moratoria of the Anglican Communion on the ordination of persons living in a same gender unions to the episcopate; the blessing of same-sex unions; and cross-border incursions by bishops. Rather, this focuses on the human and pastoral realities that we inevitably face in parishes following South Africa’s new legislation.

I am glad that we shall be welcoming two very special guests at Kopanong. The Most Revd Katharine Jefferts Schori, the Presiding Bishop of the Episcopal Church, will join part of the Synod of Bishops meeting that precedes PSC; and the Most Revd Ian Ernst, Archbishop of the Indian Ocean, and current Chairman of the Council of Anglican Provinces of Africa, will be with us both at SoB and PSC. We hope that through sharing in our meetings, and some other brief visits in Cape Town and Gauteng, they will learn more about ACSA, and we can strengthen our relationships within the Anglican Communion and as brothers and sisters in Christ.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Anglican - EpiscopalAnglican ProvincesAnglican Province of the Indian OceanAnglican Church of Southern AfricaEpiscopal Church (TEC)Presiding Bishop Sexuality Debate (in Anglican Communion)Same-sex blessings

Posted August 31, 2011 at 4:15 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]

1. Robert Lundy wrote:

It is totally “pastoral” to tell someone that they need to repent of their sin and that you will help them in whatever way you can. However, I’m guessing the Archbishop’s understanding of “pastoral” in this case doesn’t include helping active homosexuals repent. I guess we’ll have to see what those “guidelines” say. Funny, I thought the Bible was supposed to be useful for teaching, rebuking and training in righteousness.

September 1, 9:37 am | [comment link]
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